Adapting CDIO to Civil Engineering: Investigate - Plan - Design - Construct - Operate and Maintain

Adapting CDIO to Civil Engineering: Investigate - Plan - Design - Construct - Operate and Maintain

Martin Nilsson

The CDIO Initiative promotes an approach to improve the ways in which graduates prepare for engineering practice in their education. The CDIO approach is based on a view on engineering practice expressed as “conceiving, designing, implementing and operating products, processes and systems”; hence the acronym CDIO. While this was aimed to be a generic description of engineering practice, engineering programs have to a various degree been able to identify with the wording. This has been a challenge in promoting CDIO as suitable for all engineering programs.

The aim of this paper is to propose an alternative expression for engineering practice in the context of the civil engineering and built environment sector. Our first objective is to demonstrate to our colleagues in this field that the CDIO approach can, with these modifications, be applied in developing our programs. Our second objective is to showcase the adaptability of the CDIO approach, thereby encouraging thoughtful modifications and transformations.

We start by outlining the ideas underpinning the original expression, and identify the role it plays in the CDIO methodology for curriculum development. Taking these factors into account, a modified expression is proposed to describe the engineering process in civil engineering and built environment. Instead of ‘conceive – design – implement – operate’, we outline and analyse the ‘need – planning – design – construction – management’ process. Further, to ‘products, processes and systems’, we propose the addition of ‘environments’.

Proceedings of the 12th International CDIO Conference, Turku, Finland, June 12-16 2016

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